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  • Posted by: Vandana Ayyar on Wednesday, August 13 2014 12:31 PM | Comments (0)


    Interbrand is excited to announce that we have submitted to SXSW, in hopes of hosting a panel at SXSW Interactive and SXSW Music in 2015 and we need your help to get us there!

    SXSW, held in Austin, is a three-part conference and festival taking place from March 13th-22nd, consisting of three sessions: Interactive, Film, and Music. Notable speakers at the conference included Neil Degrasse Tyson, Chelsea Clinton, Gary Vaynerchuk, and Rosario Dawson.

    Interbrand has submitted four panel suggestions to SXSW, with each focusing on brands and how they use technology.

    To vote, simply click on the titles of the panels and make an account on SXSW’s PanelPicker site. Every vote matters so make sure to submit yours today!

    Mecosystem 2020: Brands are evolving into platforms to survive. Think GAFA — Google, Amazon, Facebook and Apple. Possessing unique Log-In IDs and rich, multi-contextual touch points, the user is currently displacing the masterbrand as the primary, centralizing lens. Over time, these platform brand ecosystems will become mecosystems — user-generated brand instances that reflect a unique set of preferences and dynamic, biometric data. We will map out a model for brands to achieve a cohesive experience, a coordinated act of optimizing the interface layer, the partnership layer and the supporting infrastructure. Is the current age of the GAFA platforms enhancing or constricting the user's total experience?

    Wearables & The Happiness Quotient: Can wearables help us be happier? From the quantified self movement to the emerging biometric economy, wearables may finally deliver on the collective dream — to identify what we desire and create predictive and reinforcing engagement models to help us achieve our goals. Defining a 'happiness algorithm' via ubiquitous computing and biometric data promises to be the most exciting and meaningful endeavor of our respective disciplines. In this pursuit, how can individuals, marketers and policy makers create a win-win scenario surrounding increasingly personal data?

    Brand Strategy For The Internet Of Things: Buzzwords = pain points. These days devices are "seamless": Seamless communication, seamless integration, seamless connection. Customers want their devices (and data) to be "social" — to relate to one another in convenient, helpful, and appropriate ways. But siloed protocols prevent seamless cross-category connections. We end up with Smart Scales that don't sync. Selecting the right communication technology is more than a product decision; it's a brand decision. Communication and data standards are key differentiators that dictate the devices — and brands — that can participate in an ecosystem. Partnerships and brand alliances will increasingly drive how products communicate, share data, and relay information to customers. In this session, we'll look at how communication and data standards will form an integral component of brand strategy, and examine the ways in which brands can identify and form solid partnerships to truly deliver a seamless experience to customers.

    Digital Killed The Music Star: As platform brands like Google and Apple compete for music delivery and revenue, the experience gets better and better for the music fan: shareable, streamed, on-demand, curated and tailored for the listener, cheaper and even free. At the same time, it's getting worse and worse for the artist. Digital is largely responsible for many musicians no longer receiving fair compensation for the consumption of their music. Do digital practitioners feel a responsibility to right this wrong? What is the blueprint for a win-win compensation model for musicians, fans and corporations? How can technology and branding revive the pessimistic state of the industry?

    Voting ends on Friday September 5, 2014, so be sure to get your votes in! For more information and updates, visit SXSW.com.

    Vandana Ayyar is Interbrand’s Marketing Coordinator, North America. 

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  • Posted by: Forest Young on Thursday, January 9 2014 07:44 PM | Comments (0)
    Alpine and Lamborghini

    An apt descriptor for CES 2014 might be “nothing new, but everything improved.” What was unveiled this year was more about needed product maturation than novel creation. We’ll explore some of the big takeaways and what they signify for the year ahead for brands in a series of blog posts. One of the most notable trends at CES came out of the evolution of last year’s focus on the Internet of Things and how this has forged competitive brand alliances presented in a new way this year.

    The star of the show at CES last year wasn’t a specific gadget, but the emergence of a new ecosystem of brands supporting the connected life in spaces such as the home, travel, education, the office and beyond via the emerging Internet of Things. A network of sensors and big data that aim to drive automation in our lives, the Internet of Things exists today more as a conceptual model than a realized network. The connected ecosystem reigned supreme once again. At this year’s event we saw brands celebrate the interdependencies within their respective ecosystems and their alliances in unprecedented ways.

    Brands have co-promoted in campaigns before. Remember the Alpine and Lamborghini ads from the 1980s? The merging of the Alpine brand’s sound system and the classic luxury car brand in these clever ad posters could be found on many audiophiles’ walls. This year, Monster partnered with Lamborghini to showcase their Pure Monster audio system inside $4.5 million Veneno, revisiting a time-tested ingredient brand strategy.


    The prominence of brands celebrating their ecosystem partners, however, signaled a shift. Never before have brands co-promoted to this degree — where allegiances are viewed as indicators of strength. Ford cars, for example, could be found in the Sony showroom and vice versa.

    In this hyper-connected world, a brand’s success will be reliant upon an ecosystem of partners, and for technology brands, defined as the coordinated effort between network provider, the hardware manufacturer, software developer and partner brands. This connectivity is ushering in a new wave of branding complexity.

    Simply put, who gets the credit when everyone is partnering?

    Established industry leaders may find themselves playing the role of an ingredient partner for the first time as they work to establish brand credibility in a new space. Some brands may choose to utilize white label strategies and mask their presence completely from the eyes of customers.

    The brands that will emerge as leaders in the increasingly interdependent and complex ecosystems will be those that can master the art of partnership. We were encouraged to see brands exploring promoting their partnerships this year on the CES showroom floors as a sign of things to come.

    Forest Young is a Creative Director in Interbrand’s New York office.

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